“Vulnerability sounds like truth and feels like courage. Truth and courage aren't always comfortable, but they're never weakness.”
― Brené Brown
Vulnerability is a big deal in relationships. Think about your deepest relationships and what makes them unique from all others. My guess is that it has something to do with your being honest, real and extremely vulnerable. When this is lacking, so are the roots.
Brené Brown is one of my favorite speakers. If you are familiar with TED talks, then you are probably familiar with her. If not, take a minute and follow the link below to listen to her most famous talk about the subject of vulnerability. It’s honest, raw, based on scientific fact and interesting on many levels.
Why does Jesus ask for us to be vulnerable? Why can’t we just dress up and give him our very best? The answer is in the scripture, and it's very simple.
And Jesus answered them, “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. I have not come to call the righteous but sinners to repentance.”
Our sermon Sunday was about a man with a withered hand. (See Mark 3:1-6) I am not sure exactly what that means, but it couldn’t be good. My guess is it was the kind of affliction that caused him to want to hide from others.
My husband was born with a birth defect. He was born without an ear on the left side of his head, causing not only the physical struggle of partial deafness, but harder so, the emotional struggle of growing up in the oh-so-gentle 1970s with a birth defect.
When we first met, he wore his hair long, and I quickly found out why. He was hiding. He wanted to appear perfect. He wanted to maintain an image that he hoped I would be attracted to. I so remember the moment he told me he had something he needed to talk to me about. I remember the tension in the room and the fear I felt in those few moments leading up to him unveiling what he was so embarrassed about. I remember the complete vulnerability it took for him to pull back that long hair and expose this “affliction” that left him feeling so exposed. I remember the weight of the moment and, thankfully, the understanding I had in knowing how important my reaction was. The unconditional love that washed over me at that moment was undeniable. I had so much respect and admiration for him because of his vulnerability. I immediately wanted to protect and defend him. I loved him on such a deeper level than I could have ever known, and it all started with him being vulnerable and showing me his “withered hand.”
That’s what Jesus asks of us. He doesn’t want or need us all shiny and new. What a joke! None of us are that shiny anyway, right? We are all banged up and damaged in some area or another. The longer we offer him our “good” hand, the longer we have to wait for that intimate relationship we are all longing for.
It’s time, exhausted friend. Stretch out that “withered hand” so that you can enter the amazing, undeniable, unconditional love of a healing and forgiving Savior!